If you’re planning a trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, chances are you will come across a number of adventures out on the water. When I moved here a few weeks ago, I knew there were a few tours I had to go on right away! I went on two tours so far, both of which I really enjoyed. One was a full day trip to the Marietas Islands (Las Islas Marietas) and the other a half-day excursion to go whale watching. Both of the tours with Tours in Vallarta were on a sailboat and my friends and I had such a great time.
Marietas Island Snorkeling Tour ($95 USD)
When you Google what to do in Puerto Vallarta, Las Marietas will show in search results immediately. These islands are situated just off of Banderas Bay and became famous for the Hidden Beach (Playa del Amor, or the beach of love). The Hidden Beach is said to be created by deliberate bombings that the Mexican government was controlling for target practice during WWI. As a result of the bombings, crazy cool rock formations made up the area including the Hidden Beach. It is only accessible by swimming into it, based on aerial images above.
The tour started with whale watching on a sailboat! Though, the main gem of this tour was to make our way to Las Marietas. As we neared the islands, we were told that this area offers some of the best snorkeling. We were told we would have an opportunity to go in some of the caves and tunnels too. Our boat of about 30 had about half that were brave enough to jump in the cold water. The day we went was pretty cold so a lot of us didn’t last the entire time allotted to snorkel! I sucked it up with my friend and we jumped in to see what we could find under the sea! I also took time to relax before heading back on the boat.
Afterwards, we had time to explore a remote beach on Marietas. This was undeniably my favorite part of the entire day! Being a beach bum, my friends and I thoroughly enjoyed spending time on this beach where we actually spotted several blue-footed boobies. The last time I saw these I was on the Galapagos Islands. I had no idea they could also be found living as far north as Mexico! On the rest of the tour sailing back we saw more whales, sea turtles, and baby dolphins.
Half Day Whale Watching Tour ($75 USD)
Given I lived in Mexico during winter, I knew that I would have an opportunity to see whales. Humpback whales make their way down to the warmer waters in Mexico during winter months (typically November – April). I was ecstatic to see so many whales on my excursion! With wildlife, you never know what will happen, whether you will see any or if you will be blessed with a number of encounters one after another. The boat, weather conditions, and positivity of the crew combined allowed for some amazing opportunities to catch glimpses of these whales in the wild. Not only did we see whales, but we also were lucky enough to see sea birds, baby dolphins, seals and sea turtles!
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Tours in Vallarta. All opinions are my own.